Miller State Park Utility Work

April 12, 2021 Update

Beginning Monday, April 12, 2021, Eversource and thier contractors will begin mobilizing construction equipment and materials to Miller State Park. Activities planned for this week include:

  • Construction of the staging area in an approved section of the parking lot
  • Delivery of equipment and materials to the Park and various work sites throughout the Park (including traversing along the Auto Road)
  • Installation of signage
  • Construction of access roads and private property at the summit
  • Beginning Thursday, April 15, 2021,
    • Installation of new poles will begin in the upper, also known as “new” utility corridor
    • Underground trenching will begin across the Auto Road at the summit
Flaggers will be present to assist with the safe flow of traffic. Trucks and other equipment will be present in the parking lot and throughout the area as well. For the safety of your family and our crews, please do not approach the work zones.
Construction updates and Project information can also be found at www.eversource.com/miller-state-park-project
Please note the schedule is subject to change due to weather or unexpected circumstances. Do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns; I can be reached at 603-505-0279 or via email.

Public Information Session

A public Information session was held on March 16, 2021. This session outlined the construction timeline and provided details as to how the work will effect Miller State Park visitor experience.

click here to see the Video

Questions about the project or the virtual public information session can be directed to nhparks@dncr.nh.gov

April 5, 2021 Update

Beginning Monday, April 12, 2021, Eversource and our contractors, JCR Construction, Co., Supreme Industries, Inc., Twin State Utilities Corp., and Northern Tree Service, Inc., will begin mobilizing to the Park to construct an area in a designated section of the parking lot to temporarily store materials and equipment during construction, and will also begin transporting materials and equipment to the various work locations within the Park. For the safety of your family and our crews, please do not approach the work zones.

Beginning Thursday, April 15, 2020, construction within the Park will begin. The Auto Road will be closed to automobiles and pedestrians between April 15, 2021, and May 27, 2021, to ensure safety of the public during construction. Pedestrian access to the summit can be obtained by hiking the Wapack Trail or Marion Davis Trail.

March 11, 2021 Update

New Hampshire State Parks and Eversource are working together to rebuild the existing electrical infrastructure from Route 101 to the Summit. The project will update the power line to current electrical and safety standards in order to meet current and future demand. Existing wood structures, wire and surface mounted conduit will be removed, and new poles and wire will be installed. A new underground power line will be constructed crossing the Auto Road and onto private land, and ending at the summit.
Anticipated Schedule
  • Finalize Permitting: First Quarter 2021
  • Public Information Session: March 16, 2021
  • Begin Construction: April 2021
  • Complete Construction: Summer 2021
  • Complete Restoration: Third Quarter 2021
Work will take place Monday through Friday, from 7 am to 6 pm. This schedule may change due to weather or other unexpected circumstances. 
Project Facts
Lower Utility Corridor – Overhead Line Construction
  • The lower utility construction begins at the Miller State Park parking lot and ends near the building
  • Poles and wire will be removed and replaced with new poles and wire in the existing utility corridor.
  • Park users may experience temporary trail closures on the Wapack Trail where it crosses the utility corridor during pole setting and wire stringing activities.
Upper Utility Corridor – Overhead Line Construction
  • This construction begins approximately halfway up the mountain and will be constructed in a new corridor between the Auto Road and Wapack Trail.
  • New poles and wire will replace non-compliant above ground conduit system.
Summit – Underground Line Construction
  • The Upper Utility Corridor overhead line construction transitions to underground line beginning at the building. Trenching and conduit will be installed from the building, across the Park Road, across private land adjacent to the Park Road, and to the Department of Environmental Services Building adjacent to the fire tower.
  • An overhead line will be installed off-road and will serve the lower Crown Castle (private land) site.
Auto Road Closure
  • The Auto Road will be closed to automobiles and pedestrians between April 15, 2021, and May 27, 2021, to ensure safety of the public and provide for a concentrated construction window. Pedestrian access to the summit can be obtained by hiking the Marion Davis Trail or Wapack Trail.
  • After May 28, 2021, pedestrian access from the Auto Road to the summit will be provided by a temporary trail bypassing the summit construction and connecting to the Marion Davis Trail.
Temporary Trail Closure
  • Wapack Trail – A portion of the trail may be temporarily closed where the trail crosses the utility corridor when poles and new wire are installed in this area. Signage will be placed at the location where the trail and utility corridor intersect, at the summit and in the Park parking lot to notify hikers prior to the closure.
Other Construction Facts
  • Generators will be installed at different locations throughout the Park to provide power while the existing line is de-energized during construction.
  • Construction equipment will be working in multiple locations adjacent to the Auto Road throughout the park. For your safety, please do not approach work crews.
  • Construction may be loud at times, especially while working at the summit excavating the underground trench. The process includes hammering through the ledge to achieve the required trench depth. This type of excavation will be loud, and it will be continuous until all trench routes are installed. Eversource is making every effort to complete the work as quickly and safely as possible.
  • A section of the parking lot will be blocked off and used as a construction staging area.
MSP-Map-3-12-21.JPG

January 6, 2021 Update

Throughout 2020, the N.H. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources, Eversource, and state and local stakeholders continued developing a plan to upgrade the infrastructure at the summit. Adjacent to the Eversource utility work, the Department and stakeholders secured necessary funding to transition the overhead utility lines at the summit to underground service to preserve the summit esthetics utilizing the mobilized construction equipment for the work.

Eversource worked toward obtaining the necessary permits for the overall project and in August 2020, Eversource and the Department agreed to postpone construction until Spring 2021 to limit impacts to park visitors during the busy foliage season. Prior to construction, the Department will hold a Public Information Session providing an overview of the planned utility safety upgrade project, anticipated construction timeline, and public outreach plan.


Photo courtesy: J. Codispoti

October 17, 2019 Update

On October 16, 2019 the N.H. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources held a public information session regarding a utility safety upgrade project at Miller State Park. The meeting focused on Phase I which will upgrade the utility lines and the utility corridor from NH Route 101 to just below the summit of Pack Monadnock. The work proposed includes vegetation clearing to create a new utility corridor, the replacement of existing old wooden utility poles with 16 new poles and the installation of 16 additional new poles in the new utility corridor, ending at the former FAA Building near the summit. Work this fall focus’ on clearing vegetation of the new utility corridor. Next spring utility poles will be set and the electric and telecommunications lines moved onto the new poles. Once completed, the existing infrastructure will be discontinued and removed. Public use of the Miller State Park road and the adjacent trails is not expected to be impacted, however, visitors to the park may see construction and forestry equipment and hear construction noise.

Phase II planning in the summit area is ongoing and is more complex due to multiple termination points of the utilities (electric and telecommunications) to several buildings located on both public and private lands.  DNCR will have an additional public information session when more details are available.

Update

The Miller State Park utility infrastructure project is permitted and overseen by the Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The project managed by Eversource within the Department of Transportation (DOT) Right-of-Way (ROW). Per RSA 371:17, all State lands (outside of NH DOT ROWs) and state waters (public) require licensing (permission) for the placement and location of public utility facilities either above ground, on the ground or below ground. The road at Miller State Park was declared a state highway on April 3, 1907 (Laws of 1907, Chapter 104), making it applicable to state right-of-way easement use/access. 

Public information session to address utility safety upgrade project at Miller State Park

Project documents:

September 29, 2017 Update

The Department of Natural and Cultural Resources and the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission will host a public information session for a utility project at Miller State Park. The meeting will be held October 12, 2017 at Shieling Forest in Peterborough. The utility project is designed to address safety and reliability issues at the park. 

Doors will open at 5:00 p.m. to provide attendees with the opportunity to meet and discuss the project with the state agency staff as well as representatives from Eversource, the lead utility for the project. A brief project presentation will begin at 6:00 p.m.

Shieling Forest is located at 397 Old Street Road in Peterborough. 

August 28, 2017 Update

The New Hampshire Division of Parks and Recreation is working with a multi-stakeholder team comprised of public utility companies, multiple state agencies, and communications service providers for a project involving Miller State Park on Pack Monadnock.

Stakeholders identified for input and involvement in this project thus far include the New Hampshire Division of Forests and Lands along with the Division of Parks and Recreation, the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission, the New Hampshire Department of Transportation, the New Hampshire Department of Justice, Eversource Energy, FairPoint Telecommunications, and FirstLight. The project goal is to correct National Electric Safety Code and right of way easement deficiencies of existing facilities in a legal, well documented, safe, and coordinated manner. These facilities provide electric power and telecommunication services to the communication towers and ancillary buildings at Miller State Park 

Presently, utility service to the summit from the base is a mixture of utility poles through the woods, transitioning to surface mounted conduit, and transitioning once again to utility poles near the summit. Some of the utility service connections transition again into surface mounted conduit to the ancillary buildings. Over the next few months the utility companies, and possibly the NHDOT, will be surveying the proposed routes and roadway. There will likely be surveyor stakes, markings and flagging as they lay out potential routes. Several options are being considered. The goal at this point is to determine the most economical, easily maintained and least impact option to the Park. The final plan may potentially follow along roadside right of way.

Various options researched and considered to date will be shared as well as any preliminary plans and tentative schedules will be presented. Additional updates to this web page will be provided as the project advances and new information becomes available. For more information contact MillerProject@nh.gov.
 

Update May, 2017

The Division of Parks and Recreation is working with the NH Public Utilities Commission and Eversource energy to correct safety deficiencies for the electric power and telecommunication service to the communication site at Miller State Park on Pack Monadnock. The present situation was created over time in a haphazard manner and now we are seeking to correct it in a safe, legal, documented, coordinated manner. Presently service to the summit from the base is a mixture of utility poles through the woods, then surface mounted conduit, and once again on utility poles at the summit. Over the next few weeks the utility will be surveying the proposed routes and you may see stakes and flagging as they lay out routes. Several options are being considered, however, at this point the most economical and easily maintained may be along the road side right of way.